Posters have appeared all over Santa Ramona Valley calling for a protest on Thursday outside City Hall.
The protest will demand better housing for Southside. The Chronicle spoke to Wyatt Langham, the organizer of the protest, about it.
Langham is a Brother of the Franciscan Order, who says he is motivated by social justice issues and actively pursues issues to champion for those who cannot get their voices heard.
He called the protest because of the lack of Public Housing in Southside. Public Housing, he says, would reduce the number of homeless sleeping rough on the city streets. Santa Ramona is no different, he argues, to the rest of California in its high rents and unaffordable housing.
The aim of the protest is to raise this issue, which he claims causes a divide in the city, and to request an effort to address and resolve the issue. The new Mayor, he thinks, might consider Public Housing for those who need it. “A budget could be worked out” he says and he speculates that some organizations will step in to help the people of Southside. Public Housing would, he suggested, be a good step against gentrification, a major issue both in this city and in California generally.
Because there is currently no Mayor in the city, the Chronicle has been unable to get an official statement about this, but no doubt Brother Langham will be raising the issue in the election campaign.
There is no organization behind the protest, but Brother Langham planned the protest with advance notice to the Sheriff’s Department. The Brother currently holds Mass services in the Mission and provide spiritual counsel there. He is also chaplain at the Gateway House and hopes to be part of AA meetings in the Southside Clinic alongside Dr Stone.